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Rotary Happenings: Royal Canadian Navy commander speaks before Rotary
January 9, 2019

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Although we closed down the calendar year 2018 and hopefully are looking forward to 2019, the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club year goes from July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019. Rotary International President Barry Rassin recently reminded us of a commitment to service that our RI Board of Directors adopted for this year. "Together, we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change - across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves That simple sentence distills so much of what is essential about Rotary. We unite, because we know that we are far stronger together than we could ever be alone. We take action, because we are not dreamers, but doers. We work to create lasting change that will endure long after our involvement has ended. And perhaps most important of all, we work to create change in ourselves not just building a better world around us but becoming better people ourselves."

That message certainly seems to be getting out in our community. The positive actions of Rotary are well noted and appreciated by others, thanks in many ways to press coverage we get in the local print and online newspapers. Positive actions bring positive results. Just in the last six months we have increased membership by half-a-dozen new members with an additional new member application in the pipeline and two new possible membership candidates visiting this past week's meeting. San-Cap Rotary promotes personal growth informing members on a number of subjects through our speaker series, which provides insight into the world around us by bringing in speakers each week that enlighten us on important topics that impact the world in so many ways and inspiring us to take action through service when and where we can.

On Dec. 28 our guest speaker was Commander Daniel Salvage, of the Royal Canadian Navy. Salvage has served over 24 years in the Navy, serving on destroyers, frigates, and auxiliary vessels in the role of assistant marine engineer, head of department and acting executive officer. Ashore, he has had the roles of senior service officer engineering and maintenance, marine systems engineering manager of the

Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship project, Navy environmental officer, and system authority for all Naval Auxiliary and Damage Control systems. He has an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering, a master's degree in environmental and chemical engineering and multiple masters certificates.

His topic was "Comparison-numbers of USA and Canada Navy Vessels and Coastlines, the Arctic Region and Ice, Arctic Monitoring and Movement."

So, did you notice? USA-437 Naval Vessels cover 11.8 miles of coastline versus Canada-35 Naval Vessels cover 125 Thousand Miles of Coast the Atlantic Coast, Pacific Coast, and Third Coast/The Northwest Passage through the Arctic to the North Pole. Canada has undertaken the refitting of many of its older naval vessels in the last few years updating smaller ships with solid ice-breaking equipment and larger ships with modern monitoring and defense capabilities. On order from the U.S. are new naval ships.

Salvage spent some time talking about the Northwest Passage and the melting ice in the Arctic Region. Scientific surveillance by the Canada Air Force, Canadian Rangers, and Space Agent Satellite out of California confirm the dramatic ice melt happening downward from the North Pole and throughout the Arctic Region caused by global warming. The ice melt changes are of great concern endangering the environmental well-being of the native wildlife of the area and their natural habitats. "Reductions in sea ice during the last several years have impacted Arctic indigenous people by forcing them to change their hunting strategies, and by posing serious safety concern from thin ice."

Sea-Level changes are happening now, and flooding of low-lying areas have already made changes to the Northwest Passage. Salvage told us that Canada is studying the outcome of this change on the Northwest Passage and what it means to Canada. Nature has a way of adapting to circumstances. The melting ice and raising sea levels are opening the Northwest Passage creating a more desirable international shipping route from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlanta Ocean as an alternative to the Panama Canal.

This is not exactly the positive results many of us would want but it is the future of the Northwest Passage and Arctic Region.

For information about the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club, visit sanibelrotary.org or www.facebook.com/sancaprotary. The club meets every Friday at 7 a.m. at the Dunes Golf and Tennis Club, at 949 Sand Castle Road, Sanibel; visitors are welcome to attend.

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